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EIA Report on Port City under a cloud

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The Colombo Port City project which made headlines for the past few months regarding its current status has again attracted controversy. The Nation reliably learns that one of the committee members appointed by the Prime Minister, Ranil Wickremesinghe to review the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) report of the Colombo Port City is also the environmental consultant for the project, which leads to conflict of interest.

Environmental Lawyer, Jagath Gunawardana commenting on the issue said that if a person is appointed to review the EIA was also a consultant for the Port City project then it creates several questions as to the final outcome of the committee’s report.

“It is a clear case of conflict of interest and it raises serious doubts as to the credibility of the committee report as well as its findings. So therefore we cannot expect a balanced or a fair review on the Port City project,” said Gunawardana. Meanwhile, the Janatha Vimukthi Peramuna (JVP) which had been critical about the Port City project from its inception expressed it was unaware of such an issue. When contacted, MP Sunil Handunnetti stated, “I am not aware of such an issue.” Our repeated efforts to contact Minister of Ports, Shipping & Aviation, Arjuna Ranatunga and Cabinet Spokesperson, Rajitha Senaratne proved futile.

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